Illinois Taxpayers Work One-Third of the Year for Government

View as PDF Chicago—April 29 marks Tax Freedom Day for Illinoisans, indicating the point in 2016 when taxpayers stop laboring to fund local, state, and federal governments with their taxes and finally begin to keep their hard-earned money.
“Illinois ranks 44th for its Tax Freedom Day in 2016, one of the latest in the nation” said Jared Labell, director of operations for Taxpayers United of America (TUA). “Sadly, Illinois appears near the bottom of the list this year, but that’s unsurprising as its 7,000 taxing bodies have transformed the Prairie State into the Government State.”
“Tens of thousands of taxpayers became Ex-Illinoisans since the temporary state income tax increase in 2011. That’s no coincidence. The U.S. Census Bureau data correlates with Tax Freedom Day falling later in Illinois annually as the tax burden for Illinois residents grows exponentially,” said Labell.
For Illinois taxpayers, Tax Freedom Day has been a day of mourning in recent years, occurring on April 15 in 2011, April 23 in 2012, April 25 in 2013, April 28 in 2014, and April 30 in 2015. The fact that Illinoisans are working for the government one day less this year can be attributed to the rollback of the temporary state income tax at the start of 2015, following the election of Gov. Bruce Rauner (R), but other local tax increases across the state prevented a better ranking.
According to the Tax Foundation’s annual “Tax Freedom Day” report for all 50 states, plus Washington, D.C., nationwide Tax Freedom Day fell on April 24, representing how long Americans have to work in order to pay the nation’s tax burden. However, if annual federal borrowing is included in the calculation, therefore factoring in future taxes owed, Tax Freedom Day would be pushed back more than two weeks to May 10.
By far, taxpayers will work the longest to pay local, state, and federal individual income taxes, totaling 46 days. Americans will pay $3.34 trillion in federal taxes in 2016 and an additional $1.64 trillion in state and local taxes, for an astonishing total tax bill of $4.99 trillion, or 31 percent of national income, according to the report. Americans will send more tax dollars to the government in 2016 than they will spend on food, clothing, and housing combined.
“Illinois is facing a $10 billion budget shortfall by this summer. The state has the lowest credit ratings nationwide and by far the worst-funded government pension system. Illinois has recorded fourteen straight years of budget deficits and is about to enter its eleventh month without a state budget,” said Labell. “The real question for Illinois taxpayers is simple. Taxes are revolting, so why aren’t you?”

Calls to ‘Soak the Rich’ Will Haunt Illinois Taxpayers

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Chicago – Taxpayers United of America (TUA) urges the Illinois General Assembly to reject the proposals to amend the Illinois Constitution and implement a graduated income tax by opposing HJRCA59 and HB689.
“On behalf of TUA’s membership of tens of thousands of Illinois taxpayers, we call upon the Illinois General Assembly to defeat Rep. Christian L. Mitchell’s (D-26, Chicago) proposed graduated income tax constitutional amendment and Deputy Majority Leader Rep. Lou Lang’s (D-16, Skokie) legislation proposing rates under a new graduated income tax. Enacting these changes to the state income tax would have devastating consequences for Illinois’ economy and its taxpayers,” said TUA director of operations, Jared Labell.
“Approving the graduated income tax constitutional amendment and corresponding legislation will not come close to solving the state’s budget impasse. The projected $2 billion in additional tax dollars extracted from taxpayers won’t even cover the state’s current budget deficit. This legislation will further encourage residents to join the exponentially growing group of Americans known as Ex-Illinoisans.”
“Most importantly, amending the Illinois Constitution to permit a graduated income tax gives the Illinois General Assembly alarming power over the state income tax rates at a time when Illinois’ finances are clearly troubled and politicians are more likely to make shortsighted policy decisions with far-reaching repercussions.”
“We have witnessed tens of thousands of taxpayers leave the state in the past few years since the temporary income tax increase in 2011. Illinois is facing a $10 billion budget shortfall by this summer. The state has the lowest credit ratings nationwide and by far the worst-funded government pension system. Illinois has recorded fourteen straight years of budget deficits and is in its tenth month without a state budget,” said Labell.
“If members of the Illinois General Assembly wanted to prove to taxpayers that they are acting in good faith to resolve decades of financial mismanagement, then there would be a bipartisan effort to amend or repeal the Illinois Constitution’s pension protection clause, one of the leading drivers of the state’s poor financial position.”
“Instead, however, legislators are once again focused on misappropriating billions of dollars from taxpayers by attempting to appease the public’s calls to ‘Soak the Rich!’ without letting them in on a little secret. The fact is, tax rates can be altered, promises from the government can be broken, and there is no reason to believe that Springfield won’t come for your wallet if Illinois’ financial fiasco continues unabated,” said Labell.
“Soaking the rich today opens the door to plundering everyone else tomorrow. Illinoisans must understand that the state needs to cut spending and undergo systemic reforms. Resorting to a graduated income tax will only put more power in the hands of a legislature that has run amok with Illinois’ tax dollars for decades. Taxpayers should contact their legislators and demand that they reject the passage of HJRCA59 and HB689.”

TUA Defeats Statewide Driving Tax

View as PDF Chicago—Last week, Illinois Senate President John J. Cullerton (D-Chicago) proposed legislation that would have established a new tax on Illinois drivers per miles traveled on the state’s roads, but a burst of public outrage and fierce opposition to the plan stalled Cullerton’s new tax for now. Taxpayers United of America (TUA) immediately led the charge against Cullerton’s driving tax, labeling the proposal blatant highway robbery of Illinois taxpayers.
“Taxpayers are outraged that Sen Pres. Cullerton, one of the most powerful politicians in Illinois, wants to extract more tax dollars from them while he and his colleagues in Springfield are currently misspending billions of dollars and intent on squandering billions more,” said Jared Labell, TUA’s director of operations. Labell appeared on numerous television stations denouncing Cullerton’s new driving tax, including WGN Chicago, KHQA 7 Quincy, Fox 2 St. Louis, & WQAD 8 Quad Cities.
By Friday afternoon, less than forty-eight hours after the story broke on April 13, widespread denunciation from the public led Cullerton to back off of his support for the measure, commenting on his official Facebook page, “Thank you to everyone for weighing in on ideas for how to fund road construction in Illinois. I filed legislation to start discussion and debate and get feedback on how the state could replace the gas tax. I’ve received a lot of constructive feedback that will help shape future policies. I do not intend to move forward with SB3267.”
The proposed Motor Fuel-IRIDE legislation, SB 3267, sought to monitor car odometer readings or install tracking devices in vehicles driving on Illinois roads to tax motorists per miles driven beginning July 1, 2017. Drivers would have been tracked and taxed per mile or had odometer readings checked under the proposal, or if the very real privacy violations concerned drivers, then there was an option to pay a 1.5-cent-per-mile tax at a base rate of 30,00 miles traveled annually, totaling $450. Yet another monstrous government administrative agency – the Illinois Road Improvement and Driver Enhancement Commission – would have been created to oversee the system, as well as an entire bureaucracy to implement and execute Cullerton’s highway robbery scheme.
“People still travel to work despite layers upon layers of local, state, and federal taxes,” said Labell. “With Illinois in its tenth month without a budget and Springfield politicians eyeing taxpayers for a bailout, Illinois drivers revolted against Sen. Pres. Cullerton’s new driving tax scheme and won. For the moment, at least, SB 3267 is stalled, but like most failed legislation in Illinois, if the politicians are trying to tax someone or something, there’s a good chance that the Illinois General Assembly will attempt to pass the tax another way or at a later time. Illinois taxpayers must remain vigilant to see that these proposals are soundly defeated for good.”



Taxpayers United Of America: (TUA). is a nonpartisan, 501(c)(4) taxpayer advocacy group. Founded June 27, 1976 in Chicago, Illinois by activist and economist Jim Tobin, TUA works on behalf of taxpayers to reduce local, state, and federal taxes. In the past forty years, TUA has saved taxpayers more than $200 billion n taxes and has become one of the largest taxpayer organizations in America. Check All posts. s.


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